DAIRESE GARY, DREW GORDON HONORED ON PRESEASON MOUNTAIN WEST SQUAD, LOBOS PICKED THIRD
DENVER, N.M., Oct. 12 — The University of New Mexico issued the
following news release:
The University of New Mexico Lobos, the back-to-back defending
Mountain West Conference champions, have been selected third in the
preseason media poll released by the league on Tuesday afternoon.
Along with the poll, the conference released its preseason
all-conference teams and honorees. Dairese Gary was named to the
preseason all-conference team, along with Drew Gordon who picked up
Newcomer of the Year honors.
The Lobos garnered three first-place votes and 214 points from a
panel of 30 media members. Last year, despite being picked fifth in
the preseason poll, the Lobos won their second consecutive Mountain
West title with a 14-2 league record, winning their final 14
conference games. The team went on to post a school record 30 wins,
going 30-5 for the season and winning an
NCAA Tournament game for the first
time in 11 years.
The program reached other heights, highlighted by a No. 8
national ranking and a No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. Last year
the Lobos had four players honored by the conference in the
postseason, including Darington Hobson winning Player of the Year
honors, and head coach Steve Alford garnering his second straight
Coach of the Year award.
In talking about this year’s team at the Mountain West media
days, Alford alluded to his two starters from last year in the
graduated Roman Martinez and NBA-bound Darington Hobson. “Those are
two guys that are hard to replace, but we have two transfers that
are going to have to step up in a hurry.” Those transfers are
Emmanuel Negedu from Tennessee and Drew Gordon from UCLA, who join
three starters and six letterwinners from last year’s 30-5
“Emmanuel Negedu from Tennessee and Drew Gordon from UCLA, who
becomes eligible six games before league play, these are two
transfers that are going to have to make an immediate impact. Nine
of our 13 players are freshmen or sophomores, so our young guys are
going to have to develop quickly,” said Alford.
Gordon was named the preseason Newcomer of the Year. Gordon
averaged 11.2 points and 5.3 rebounds for UCLA last season in the
first semester over six games before transferring to New Mexico. He
also played in 34 of UCLA’s 35 games as a freshman.
Drew Gordon was named Preseason Newcomer of the Year
One guy who has already developed is Gary, from Elkhart, Ind.
The lone senior averaged 13.3 points and 3.9 assists per game, and
was named both first team All-Mountain West and All-MWC Defensive
Team. Gary was at his best when it mattered most, averaging 19.8
points per game over the final seven contests, including four
“As long as I have Dairese Gary at every jump ball, we are going
to be in games,” said Alford. “He’s just one of those special guys.
He can make the game ugly and win, he can make a game pretty and
win but as long as he is there at the tip we feel very confident
that we have a chance.”
Four seniors and a sophomore earned preseason All-Conference
honors, and UNM’s Dairese Gary was one of three guards, joining
BYU’s Jimmer Fredette, who was the preseason Player of the Year,
and Tre’Von Willis of UNLV. San Diego State had a pair of forwards
honored on the all-conference in Kawhi Leonard and Malcolm Thomas.
BYU’s Kyle Collinsworth was named preseason Freshman of the
The Lobos will open exhibition play on Wednesday, November 3 at
7 p.m. against Eastern New Mexico in the renovated Pit. The Lobos
will host an open house on Monday, November 1. The team will
practice from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., with the venue open for students
at 2:30 and for non-students at 3:30 p.m. The open house will begin
at 5 p.m., and later that night the legendary Bobby Knight will be
speaking at the Embassy Suites hotel with a portion of the proceeds
to benefit the University Libraries. For any query with respect to
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